1,8M take to the streets in Catalonia for an independence referendum

Catalan MonitorNews Roundup

Barcelona has today been the scenario of yet another historical show of force by the Catalan pro-independence movement. Hundreds of thousands of people have filled the streets to form a massive, V-shaped Catalan flag in support of a secession referendum scheduled by a majority of Catalan parties for the next November 9, but likely to be blocked by the Spanish government.

“The picture that will appear all over the globe! #CatalansVote9N [November 9] #SISI [Yes-Yes]”

The story has indeed been picked up by a number of international media:

BBC | Catalans rally for independence referendum from Spain
On Catalonia’s national day, or La Diada, as it’s called here, a huge crowd formed the thin red and yellow stripes of the Catalan flag, creating a giant ‘V’ for vote. Look closer and you could see an endless number of pro-independence Catalan flags, which have a blue triangle and a silver star. There were also a handful of Scottish flags fluttering in the wind.

Each year, the atmosphere at the La Diada celebrations is electric and it’s easy to imagine the event being infectious for some.

USA Today | ‘Independencia!’: Protesters demand Catalonia vote
“Catalans want to vote. We want to vote in order to become the masters of our own future and to be able to decide how to best respond to the needs of our fellow citizens. We are not moved by the desire to be better than others, but by the desire that we may become better ourselves,” Mas said Wednesday in a statement.

Al Jazeera | Spain’s Catalans seek referendum vote
Al Jazeera video screenshot

Make sure you visit the excellent photo gallery by the Corriere della Sera [Catalonia, national day dedicated to independence], which shows the stark contrast between the festive character of the pro-independence demonstration and the intimidating gathering of the far-right, anti-independence group Alianza Nacional. On the other hand, parties opposed to independence peacefully demonstrated in another Catalan town, Tarragona, although in significantly smaller numbers: between 2,000 and 4,000 people.

For a thorough international press clipping visit @albertcuesta’s Storify and International Catalonia’s news selection.